This was the first time I had ever made dumplings.
For me, dumplings have always been something that was strictly reserved for cafes and restaurants. Chinatown. In other words – the experts.
Definitely not for making at home.
Somehow, a little seed got planted in my brain about Sweet Potato Gyoza. Had I read about them somewhere? Seen them on a menu? I still don’t know, but I couldn’t seem to shake the idea. They sounded so good!
I bought some sweet potato, ginger, spring onions, and a packet of wonton wrappers. I googled ‘How to make Gyoza’ and decided to just wing it from there.
To my surprise, it was a success.
For those who do not know, Gyoza are the Japanese version of a dumping, or pot-sticker. First they are pan fried to form a crispy base then finished off by adding a splash of water and a tight lid, to steam the tops. I am not sure if they usually have meat in the filling or are vegetarian. My version are vegan. And probably not authentic, but I don’t mind one bit.
There was no special technique needed to assemble the dumplings, it was as simple as placing a teaspoon of the mixture in the centre, wetting the edges of the pastry using your finger, folding it over, and making little pleats to secure it shut. The only thing I found is that I kept placing too much filling on the base – a heaped teaspoon is plenty.
I assembled a huge batch. I finished the entire packet of wonton wrappers. I cooked 5 of them for my lunch and placed the remainder in the freezer, ready to go for next time. 10 minutes later I pulled 4 more out of the freezer and cooked another batch. They were incredible!
I was very pleased with myself.
I just wish I could figure out where the idea came from?
Sweet Potato Gyoza
makes 30 dumplings
1 small to medium sweet potato, peeled and cut into a 2cm dice
6 spring onions, thinly sliced
1 tsp minced ginger
2 Tbsp light soy sauce
1 packet wonton wrappers
splash of oil, for frying (I actually used coconut oil and was happy with the result)
lots of light soy sauce for dipping.
- Place the sweet potato into a saucepan with plenty of boiling water. Cook until the sweet potato are tender – about 10 mins.
- Drain and place them back into the pot. Mash them with a potato masher, add the ginger, spring onion and soy sauce and mash again until well combined. Taste for salt and adjust if necessary.
- Now to assemble to dumplings:
- Lay the wonton wrappers out on the bench top. Place a heaped teaspoon into the centre of each. With a glass of water next to you, use your finger to wet the rim then fold over and seal closed. Make little pleats along the edge, as pictured above, to unsure they are secure. Repeat this process until you’re complete.
- From here you can place them in the freezer or cook as many as you wish.
- To cook:
- Heat your oil in a heavy based pan with a lid. If you don’t have a lid you can improvise by using tin foil.
- Lay the dumplings into the pan and cook for a minute or two, until the base is golden. Now pour in a decent splash of water but be careful – it will splutter! Pop the lid on top and let them steam for about 2 minutes. Remove the lid and let the rest of the water evaporate.
- Now they are ready!
I served mine with copious amounts of light soy sauce and it was absolutely delicious, but I would be very interested to hear if anyone has some amazing concoction for their Gyoza.. Is there a particular sauce that is traditionally served with them? I’d love to know. X